16 March 2009

St. Patrick's Day: Why I Love the Irish.

Of all the saint's days on the litergical calendar, my favourite has to be St. Patrick's Day. St. Patrick's Day represents to me the first major mass celebration we celebrate that I can associate with Spring. My love of the Irish, & all things Irish, probably goes back to my childhood. While I for sure had my share of upheaval, I have learned that if you can survive life with an Irish step-father, you can pretty much overcome any upheaval in life.
But my love goes beyond that. For as much heartache and excitement that one has growing up in a Irish home, I know that deep down inside, I will always be tied to the Irish by the things that I truly love. My little obsessions as it were.

So without further ado, here are a list of 5 things I love about the Irish.

#5- Irish Sweaters: The Irish seem to get that people want to wear sweaters for comfort and warm. None of this cheap material crudely sewn together crap. No siree. The quality of an aran sweater is unparalled to anything else constructed. I can just imagine a hard working farmer's wife, weaving sheeps wool, using a standard design passed on from previous generations.

Plus, take a look at the picture on the side. Is that not the most romatic image? A normal sized average woman wearing sweats and a sweater, with a hot guy to snuggle with. *SIGH*

The Irish give us love by way of a sweater!

#4- Irish Jewellery: My sister Jennifer, more Irish then I, loves Claddaugh Rings. Having never heard of them, Jennifer took me to the Irish booth at Heritage Days, were she I proceeded to buy one.

Like most Irish jewellery, the design is very deliberate and has a history behind it. Like celtic crosses and other jewellery that the Irish produce, there is a complex design and story behind everything that is crafted. I don't normally like or wear gold, except for Irish jewellery. When I get married, I pray that it's to an Irish man who will buy me Irish jewellery. Or a regular guy, as long as he buys me Irish jewellery. ;)

#3- Irish Alcahol: I think this picture pretty much says it all. *edited to add that the the building in the picture is a beer store* 'Nuff said.

#2- Irish Entertainment: I love all things when it comes to Irish Entertainment. The Irish more than any other culture can tell a good weaving gripping story. While mostly pathos and angst (as seems to be the defining narrative), in story, song or movie, there is an enduring hope and a loving endurance.

I love movies that take place in Ireland or tell Irish stories (examples: In the Name of the Father, Angela's Ashes, P.S. I Love You, Circle of Friends, In America, Boondock Saints, Waking Ned Devine, Micheal Collins and so on). The books take those emotions and extend it to the core of you.

One book I am reading right now is Angela's Ashes. I saw the movie a few years back and am finally getting around to the book. I can relate to so much, even if my situation was signficantly better. The situations of living in an Irish family may very, but the emotions are the same.

Finally, can you include a post without mentioning Irish music? I think not. When I think back to the my favourite groups, or my favourite songs, chances are they are compose by an Irish composer. U2 is the obvious group that everyone things of, and I could list to Sunday Bloody Sunday all day long. And what is a bar song without House of Pain ?

*jump around, jump around, jump up, jump up and get down...jump jump jump". <--you can thank me later when you are trying to sleep at night but this song won't leave your head.

But the less obvious muscians include The Cranberries. This was the first group that mom and I liked together. They came out in the 90's and they sound Irish.

The best singer by far though is Enya. When I'm stressed, when I'm relaxed, when I need to concetrate, or when I'm going for walks in the rain...Enya will be in my MP3 list.

Go have a listen: http://www.enya.com/videos.php?vid=p

***So...that leaves me with one thing that I love about the Irish. What can I possibly love more than music, and books, and movies, and rings and sweaters and beer??? Tune in tomorrow as I reveal my number one Irish obsession. ****

P.S. Although anyone who knows me knows what is missing..ha ha. It will be so obvious tomorrow.



Anonymous said...

"Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood... Worse yet is the miserable Irish-Catholic childhood."

Heh... I blame it all on little Frankie's Protestant hair.

Dani said...

I betcha years of turmoil in Ireland started at a hair salon. :P

Reese said...

We'd really like to go to Ireland someday, it's supposed to be a super fun holiday.

And now that we know where the Irish Store moved to, we'll have to go check out the $400 sweaters and $300 throws...